How Can You Make a Career in Microbiology?
Microbiology has become one of the hottest buzzwords after the pandemic. It has gathered immense popularity and is a booming sector under the umbrella of biology. Microbes play an essential role in every aspect of our lives. Their function in life on earth is unquestionable as they form the very crux of our biosphere. A microbiology career is rewarding and provides one with a myriad of opportunities for personal development and professional growth.
What is microbiology?
Microbiology fundamentally pertains to the study of microscopic living organisms or microbes such as algae, prions, viruses, fungi, bacteria, and archaea. A person specializing in the field of microbiology is referred to as a microbiologist. Microbiologists play an important part in rigorously studying infectious agents and organisms that are not visible to the human eye. In addition, they also explore the various interactions of microorganisms with humans and organisms that are present around us. They are indispensable assets and help us in numerous ways by gauging the role of tiny microbes in climate change, developing green technologies, and checking whether the food is safe or not. This field has an immense scope as it is intricately involved in pharmacy, medicine, agriculture, research, etc.
Eligibility to become a microbiologist
For a flourishing career in this field, one must take physics, biology, and chemistry in their higher secondary (10+2). Along with taking the Science stream, students must have a major in Biology. At the undergraduate level, students must take apparent Class 12 to pursue B.Sc in Microbiology. A B.Sc degree in microbiology/botany/zoology is required to take up M.Sc in microbiology. To further fortify their knowledge in microbiology, one can seek a Ph.D. or M.Phil. A few microbiology colleges also conduct independent entrance examinations for Ph.D. applicants. Pursuing microbiology courses from reputed colleges open the gateway to abundant opportunities. The right qualifications can strengthen one’s profile and fetch bright career builder solutions for young students.
Career options as a Microbiologist
As an individual, each of us possesses a unique set of skills. In a microbiology career, one must always try to understand their area of interest and pick a field accordingly. Some of the available career paths are listed below:
- They work primarily in the environment, agriculture, food, and clinical industries and manipulate the genes of a microorganism.
- Clinical laboratory scientists
- They work in several domains such as clinical, veterinary, state, and national health laboratories.
- They fundamentally analyze urine, blood, tissue, and other bodily specimens to understand the root cause of an infection.
- They also determine the kind of antibiotic that will help treat the infection.
- They primarily investigate the way a body defends and protects itself against diseases.
- The key research areas are biodefence, genetics, vaccine development, etc.
- They study the fungus that produces antibiotics and disease-causing fungus.
- They primarily work in clinical, research, and pharmaceutical laboratories.
- In environmental laboratories, they analyze indoor air for mold spores.
- Food scientists and technologists
- They quintessentially test food and beverage products for pathogens such as listeria monocytogenes and salmonella. They also look for spoilage microorganisms, for instance, lactic acid bacteria.
- They play a fundamental role in assisting their company in meeting the standards for food quality and product safety.
- Pharmaceutical scientists and technologists
- They mainly ensure the safety of pharmaceutical products.
- Technologists often test raw materials and finished products to figure out disease-causing microorganisms, whereas scientists develop new therapies and drugs.
- Water quality laboratory technicians
- Water treatment plants, municipalities, and state and local agencies require skilled technicians to test the drinking water, recreational water, and treated water.
- Laboratories often look for E. Coli which indicates fecal contamination.
Top recruiting companies for microbiologists
These below mentioned names belong to some of the top recruiting companies for microbiologists in India –
- Krauter Healthcare Ltd.
- Lakshmi Life Sciences Ltd.
- Alpha-Pharma Healthcare India Pvt. Ltd.
- Mascot International
- Siron Technology Pvt Ltd
- The Indian Hotels Company Ltd
Tips for a person who wants to pursue a career in microbiology
- To be an efficient microbiologist, one must be competent and proficient in basic concepts.
- One must always research the right university for the specific area of interest.
- Internships give you immense exposure and prepare you for a full-time position.
- One must take the necessary steps to educate themselves about career possibilities.
Microbes are essentially the predecessors of all living beings. They are the backbone of all other forms of life. To have an in-depth understanding of life on this planet, one must be aware of the intricacies of microbiology. A microbiology career is essential to understand the nitty-gritty of these complex organisms and tackle the emerging threats of bioterrorism.